dear children: your parents killed the Earth

1. yes.
the ones you live with.

the one you live upon.

and when these parents
decided to give you life
they were expressing a belief
in the future,
the future of the World
—you are that belief, made flesh.

yet in every thing they do
your parents
push us one meter more
over the cliff,
the end of all that is human.

in the toxic sludge
with which they clean the house,
in the gas and oil
they pour in the family car,
in the garbage bargain food
they feed you and themselves,
in the rich white man
they voted for in Ottawa…

your parents killed the Earth,
so why bother about it now?
they strangled the birds, the fish,
cut down every tree, made deserts where once were forests
—but the deeds are done
so why talk about it now?

let me tell you a secret
—you know what secrets are,
your parents have many
and secrets are like monsters,
much too wild and dangerous
to keep around the house.

so if i tell some secrets,
i’m setting those monsters free
—they’ll return to the Cave of Dreams,
back to monster heaven,
and be with their friends again.

i will tell it:
we can still save the planet Earth
but we must begin today,
this very moment we must begin.

and it won’t be recycling
or cleaning up the schoolyard
—you kids are smart
and have seen through those jokes already—
it won’t be your parents
making you take out the trash,
your parents have flat-out refused
to help in saving planet Earth.

you could ask them
if what i say is true,
but they will reply
they didn’t know they were killing the world.

they will say something like,
“we have to work to feed you,
we have to work, it’s the law;
we just work on heater coils,
a faster way to melt the cheese,
to move the trains, to make the water boil.
we simply sold the real estate, the research,
to pay our many bills,
production was our temple
—we’ve had no time
to kill this Mother Earth!”
and they will probably get angry
at this point
and send you off to bed.

let’s tell another secret
—we’ll let this one free together—
your parents knew
they were killing Mother Earth
they knew
and did it anyway
living in denial
and LYING to you
(and what do you think of that?
didn’t they warn you to never lie?)
really they didn’t know
that they were involved
in the killing of planet Earth
in which case
(and what do you think of that?
did they not always urge you to learn and grow your brain?).

your parents
(the ones who are killing Mother Earth)
will say something
“things aren’t as simple as all that,”
“children just don’t understand.”

—another secret, here—
this is exactly what
will say when they start to tell you
the ones
to blame.

2. Dear Children,
your parents are keeping slaves,
and they starve them
and chain them hard as iron
and they hide them
in factories
and ghettoes, special camps, and hovels
all around this planet Mother Earth.

Your parents are keeping slaves
to make machines
to grow the food
to knit the clothes
to build the roads
to sing slave songs
(your parents like these best of all)
to stay behind bars
in torture cells and Death,
to stand ignorant and ill,
to be shipped
at your parents’ leisure
half way ‘round this Earth of ours
to drive the cabs
to pick the fruit
to fill the shoes of other, dead slaves
and should these poorest poor
the slaves your parents keep
should they displease or fail or fall
off to prisons go
or back to warzones sent
so your parents can get fresh new slaves
and go on killing Mother Earth.

3. Dear children,
is a story
written by your parents
(mostly your Dad—HIS-story, don’t you see?)
and your parents’ parents’ parents
about the past
of long ago
and not-so-long-ago,
from which
they took out a lot of stuff
like voices they didn’t like the sounds of
like violence they did like the sounds of
like women who said “no,”
like how your parents and their friends
sailed and flew and marched
to nearly every poorest place
and murdered the leaders there
(you see how happy
your parents are with blood?).

and in this story
written by your parents
(who still are killing Mother Earth)
they added lots of stuff
(stuff that isn’t true—
you see how comfortable your parents are with lies?)
they added lots of stuff
(yes, children just like you).

or maybe your Earth-murdering parents
will tell you
they didn’t know
they didn’t hear nor see
the poor being shot and robbed
the poor being given disease
and dying on the dirt floors of their huts
“we didn’t shoot them,
we never pulled the trigger!”

but the secrets keep escaping,
and here is another loosening her bonds:
if your parents don’t know
that they sailed half way ‘round our Earth
and strangled some old woman
who dared keep back some grain
and hanged some young black man
who dared suggest that his people and land were slaves
—well, but how do they find their way home each night?
how can such forgetful people raise up children?
i’m not so sure
about these parents of yours.

4. Dear children maybe you’ll be grounded
or given extra chores
but if you get a moment
maybe over supper
ask your parents just what does “Democracy” mean.

i can’t imagine what they’ll say
but keep asking
even after they finally whisper
“we don’t know”
or when they tell you
to be quiet and eat your food

there’s a rich white man
who lives in Ottawa
but he also lives at home
and he sent some poor Canadian soldiers
to parts of Canada
and other places, too,
who killed the poorest slaves of all.

and remember:
this is one of the biggest lies ever told
we call it “Democracy”
and it is similar
to a big pile of broken telephones
and it is like
a large crowd of people
who have nothing to think and nothing to say
except what Television tells them to
and it is like
a rich man who points a gun at your head
and it reminds me of the time of kings
and it sounds like a poop landing in the toilet
and it means “Same thing again” in Greek
or “Worse than before” I can’t remember
but the rich white guy in Ottawa
he knows what it means
something about
him being allowed to do whatever he wants
(and he’s an Earth-killer, too).

if you listen, children,
you’ll hear those broken phones
they’ve piled up all over town
and no one uses them
not your parents
they won’t call the rich white man in Ottawa
they could easily call
but they won’t
they say they are too busy
—go ahead and ask them—
and what would they say,
if they used the phones,
but “please do not kill the poor leaders of the poor”?
and what would the rich white man in Ottawa say, but
something like
“things aren’t as simple as all that,”
“ you are like children who just don’t understand”?

i think you are starting to understand
what “Democracy” means.

and if your parents are too busy
—you tell me…
do they have time to play with you anymore?—
then they are just as much to blame
as the poor Canadian soldiers
who poisoned the well
in the village
in the desert
in the mountains
in the poorest lands of all.

and if your parents are guilty
and if your parents are LIARS
and your parents are KILLERS
are these the kind of folks you want
to teach you
how to be a grown-up?
how to live with others?
how to be a parent?

5. Dear children it’s time to leave
go and pack your bags
bring your imagination
of what the World can be
bring your hearts and eyes and ears
so you may see the truth of Earth
pack your childhood things
we’ll set out at once
we’ll depart after dark
and we’re going past the moon
and the deepest ocean floor
we must for once seek that place
where children learn and grow
to fight that rich white man in Ottawa
with words
with truth
with love.

we’re going to that place
so the rich white man in Ottawa
and the poor Canadian soldiers
can all go home
so they can’t hurt anyone

6. Ok. now.
i have one last secret
to let you in on:
the rich white man in Ottawa isn’t really in charge
rather, everybody
all the grown-ups anyway
think a group of rich white men
who own the giant corporations
the kind your parents work for
are in charge of the dying Earth.

but they aren’t in control:

yet all the grown-ups
were trained in school
to think these rich white men
are in charge.

but they’re not in charge:

and everybody
all the grown-ups anyway
when one rich white guy in Ottawa
gets sent home forever
only to be replaced
by another rich white guy in Ottawa
and everybody
all the grown-ups anyway
pretend that he’s now in charge.

but he’s not:

7. Come away, dear children,
you are orphans now.
Soon enough,
orphans, children dear.


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